Indo-Pak trade will see a 20% drop amid border tension
Trade between India and Pakistan may dip by 20% in 2012-13 due to the current disturbance at the LoC and within the Pakistan.
Analysis by the apex industry body Assocham says that the bilateral trade between the two countries during the first half of the year was $ 1.1 billion and may further dip by 20% during the year 2012-13.
“The on-going atmosphere will have its own repercussions and will be reflected on cross-border trade. Also, Indian businessmen and small merchants who were contemplating trade relations with Pakistan have put their plans on hold," reveals the study report `Indo-Pak trade & Its Impact on India’.
According to estimates, bilateral trade in 2011-12 between the two countries had recorded a decrease of 14% and stood at US$ 1.9 billion. India’s export to Pakistan in the same period was US$ 1.5 billion which shows a decrease of 25% against US$ 2.0 billion in the fiscal 2010-11. Imports from Pakistan during the same period were worth US$ 0.4 billion, an 48% increase over the 2010-11 of US$ 0.27 billion.
The report apprehends that the current disturbances would not only affect India-Pakistan trade but the entire intra-trade SAARC trade would be affected since most of the countries in the region are inter-dependent in various items.
“If things are not handle diplomatically, it may resulted to serious disruption of trade in Pakistan particularly and SAARC in general and may also accelerate into regional uncertainty,” said DS Rawat, Assocham's Secretary General in statement.
Pakistan supplied chickpeas, pulses, grains and sugar when there is shortage in India
and on the other hand, India supplied onions, potatoes, pulses and other food items to Pakistan.
Assocham said that the route towards better relations between India and Pakistan has increased the trade in the last few years. Not only are there large trade related advantages to governments and consumers in both countries but entire South Asian region gains from the harmony of two countries with increased trade and commerce.
The study further reveals that Pakistan can be greatly benefited from the import of agricultural produce like wheat, spices, tea and other edibles to meet production shortfalls at competitive prices.
Pakistan mainly export products such as cotton yarn and textiles, leather products, surgical instruments, electrical fans, water coolers, paper, vegetables and fruits.